Philosophical Grounding For the Moral Law: In Defense of Kant’s Factum der Vernunft (Fact of Reason)

Daniel Paul Dal Monte


In this paper, I first explain Slajov Žižek’s analysis of the grounds of Kant’s categorical imperative. I show how Žižek considered the grounds of the categorical imperative to be an example of irrationalism that ran counter to the spirit of the Enlightenment, of which Kant was, ironically, a major proponent. The irrationalism in Kant’s moral law makes him vulnerable to moral skepticism. I go on to counter this interpretation by drawing from Kant’s practical philosophy. I counter the moral skeptic by arguing from moral phenomenology to the existence of a reason that is independent of empirical motivations and so objectively determining. Whatever is objectively determining logically supersedes that which is based on a particular context. The moral law is rooted in the ontology of an independent faculty of reason capable of issuing a universal law. The union of ontology and ethics means that the categorical imperative is not irrational.

Palabras clave

Žižek; Kant; fact of reason; moral skepticism

Texto completo:



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